Widely previewed throughout 1985, and first sold in the 1986 model year, the Taurus was one of Ford Motor Company’s most successful models. The smooth , all new 1986 Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable not only replaced the dated Fairmont based “little” LTD, and Marquis (respectively), but proved a much better seller at over 236,000 Taurus’, and 96,000 Sables, for its nine month model year. The company spent five years and $3 billion to develop the Taurus/Sable, and when it was introduced, the car’s advanced engineering and aerodynamic design drew widespread praise. Offering front drive, three trim levels, sedan and wagon body styles, and a host of sensible features, Taurus/Sable fast became a symbol of Detroit’s new “can-do” attitude and ability to compete against even high buck imports. Base prices were in the $10,000 to $14,000 range. By 1992 the Taurus had become the best selling car in the United States, barely beating out the Honda Accord, which had held that position since 1989.